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Trya gives independence a go!

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It's raining. Heavy skies are laden with mist this morning across much of the damp forest.

In Rajbehra Jaya’s family have spent the night under cover in a favourite cave deep beneath a rich sandstone hill and emerged late in the morning to warm up. Two of the family were sitting on the Kanoji road smiling for a BBC film crew presently at working in Bandhavgarh. But where have the other two siblings vanished too?

This afternoon, one little bewildered tiger was found nestled amongst the bamboo on the edge of Rajbehra. It was the smart and independent minded Trya out by herself, her own kind of adventurous sleepover. Both her sisters are also at the ‘age of wander’ now, at twenty two months old, but not nearly as adventurous as Trya. The reality is that their mother will soon dump them in an act of hard love, to get on with their lives independently and individually. The only question will then be which sister will be left with the still immature brother Johnno? Maybe he can hang on to the apron strings of his mother and even babysit for any new half brothers and half sisters? It’s happened before

Trya shuffles a little and rises to her feet to stretch. She stares out into the meadow from her bamboo cover before turning around and once more settling in as tight a ball as possible, huddled in the grassy warmth for comfort. She remains here all afternoon till darkness falls hardly moving and little concerned with the noises about her, sounds that have been a part of her existence since birth.